There is a New A1C Test for Diabetic Pets
Recently a new test for pet diabetes became available. It is the hemoglobin A1C for dogs and cats. I think there are definitely some situations where this test will be good for veterinary patients, but please don’t throw out your glucose meters just yet. A blood glucose curve is still my preferred test to evaluate glucose regulation in diabetic pets.
Doctors use the A1C test for humans as well. This test gives us a reflection over the recent past as to what the patient’s blood glucose has been. It is a longer “look” at past blood glucose than the fructosamine test that we veterinarians have had in our toolbox for years.
A blood glucose reading from a blood glucose meter tells us what the blood glucose is at a moment in time. A fructosamine test gives us an indication of what the blood glucose regulation has been over the previous few weeks. The new hemoglobin A1C test gives us an indication of the blood glucose over the last 110 days for dogs and over the last 70 days for cats.
What Might be a Good Time to Use a Fructosamine or A1C Test?
Fractious pets that won’t allow a blood glucose curve at home or even in the clinic would be reasonable patients to forego a curve and settle on one of these tests. If a pet would harm the owner (while attempting a blood glucose curve) or if the pet becomes so stressed at a vet clinic that a blood glucose curve is tarnished with stress hyperglycemia, an A1C test can be helpful. Given the average situation, a relaxed pet who will allow blood glucose checks by owners, is the better option as I’d still much rather evaluate a blood Continue reading